Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Arrest of playboy stockbroker lays bare Bollywood underbelly again

The head of one of India’s oldest stock broking firms has been arrested for allegedly shielding one of Mumbai’s most notorious gangsters who was wanted in connection with the murder of a Bollywood actor’s father as well as an upcoming film director.
Gautam Vora of ULJK Financial Group – founded in 1903 – is accused of helping Vijay Palande flee the country following the murder of Bollywood producer Arun Tikku as well as the disappearance of director Karan Kakkad.
Vora is known for his playboy lifestyle and the glitzy show business parties he hosts.
He has also enjoyed the company of a string of high profile models; one of whom – Viveka Babajee – committed suicide in 2010 after Vora refused to marry her.  The final entry in her diary had famously declared: “Gautam Vora, You Killed Me.”
According to detectives investigating a series of murders and extortion cases, Mr Vora has confessed that he knew Vijay Palande as Karan Sood, the brother of model Simran Sood, and had not known his real identity or of any allegations against him when he helped him attempt to leave India.
Mr Vora had been dating Simran Sood, the model posing as Palande's sister.
Meanwhile, police are continuing their search for the severed head of 26-year-old actress Meenakshi Thapar who was kidnapped and dismembered by two fellow actors she had met on a set.
The Bollywood industry has long been associated with crime and many of its films are believed to have been used as money laundering vehicles by some of Mumbai's most feared gangsters.
Hussein Zaidi, the crime reporter and scriptwriter told the Daily Telegraph that Bollywood is still largely financed by money launderers and produced by people of dubious credentials.
"Bollywood is always vulnerable to people with all kinds of backgrounds, no one asks for credentials. They get access to people through indirect invites to parties and women still get parts through the casting couch. Lots of the money is still underworld finance," he said.
-    Staff Reporter

Arrest of playboy stockbroker lays bare Bollywood underbelly again

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